Aiming to become a European champion of cybersecurity without being in a strong position on both the French and German markets is a mission impossible. Based on this observation, the company Vade, French leader in email security, and the German Hornetsecurity Group have decided to join forces. The first is bought by the second, for an amount which has not been disclosed. This operation aims to position the new group as a key cybersecurity provider on the European market.

Little known in France, the German Hornetsecurity offers a set of security services to companies that switch to the public cloud (backup, management of access authorizations, data compliance, etc.). Vade brings a globally recognized email security product for Microsoft 365, with email filtering technology that protects consumers, businesses and organizations from email cyberattacks, including malware, spear phishing and phishing. Its technology notably protects major telecoms players in several countries (Orange, Comcast, BT, Softbank, etc.)

Promising Next 40 cyber company, technological player Vade (formerly Vade Secure) has had a troubled journey. The company suffered a big blow in the American market, with a very costly lawsuit opposing it to its main competitor Proofpoint in the United States following the poaching of an employee, which ended with a fine. of 13.5 million dollars Despite this “massive blow”, Vade – a profitable company – continued a growth dynamic and had managed to raise 28 million euros in May 2022, from the investment funds Tikehau Ace Capital, Bpifrance and Auriga Partners. The company ultimately had to choose another way of accelerating. “This was not the initial destiny for Vade,” recognizes Georges Lotigier, general director of Vade. We hoped to be able to extend our range of products and be a player in European consolidation.

But the leader faced the facts. Alone, without possible access to the German market, in a venture capital market that had become complicated, his dreams of European expansion were becoming too difficult to realize. “Joining forces was the best solution, especially given our complementarity in terms of products and markets.” Vade and Hornet also share a similar distribution approach, focused on MSPs and resellers, as well as agreements with major distributors and aggregators in North America, EMEA and Asia.

A common investor, the PSG Equity fund, also worked for this merger. “This operation opens the doors to a French market for us, by introducing Hornetsecurity products in this important region, and strengthens our technological capabilities” adds Daniel Hofmann, director general of Hornetsecurity, who keeps the reins of the new group. Georges Lotigier will be a member of the supervisory board. “This type of merger is not common in the European cybersecurity market,” adds Daniel Hoffmann. This will significantly accelerate our growth.” At a time when AI is bringing big changes to cybersecurity, the new group is strengthening its financial capabilities necessary for technological investments.

Both companies are also strong advocates of a need for technological sovereignty. “We need to have a strong cybersecurity provider in Europe and it was really the perfect timing for this tie-up. » insists Daniel Hofmann. Because American players are in ambush to conquer a growing European market, in which companies are accelerating their switch to the cloud. Some players in the French ecosystem, however, take a dim view of this operation. “French cybersecurity loses a new flagship: Vade, which was impacted by a lawsuit against ProofPoint, is now bought by American funds and a German company. French cyber sovereignty is at stake,” said Thomas Kerjean, CEO of MailinBlack.